Octopus Inspired Robot Arm: Improving Keyhole Surgery One Leg at a Time

19/05/2015
The medical industry could soon see the introduction of a robotic arm designed to perform keyhole surgery, while taking inspiration from an unlikely source; the leg of an octopus.

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This innovative piece of equipment has been designed by a team of Italian researchers to reduce any safety risks involved with this delicate form of surgery.

So, why choose such an obscure creature as inspiration?

The Concept
An octopus is a very uniquely designed animal. With no rigid structures, they are incredibly flexible; being able to adapt their body shape and rigidity to suit their environment is pretty unique to this species.

This ability to control how rigid their bodies are is what is so attractive about the octopus, and what this robotic arm tries to replicate. The designers are hoping that this control will eliminate the need for a whole variety of surgical tools, with this robotic arm being able to perform all the tasks that a surgery may require.